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John Lewis on course to exceed M&S' sales

John Lewis Partnership is expected to unveil a 6% rise in profits for its half year figures, with sales on course to exceed Marks & Spencer’s for 2013.

The company, which owns the eponymous department store chain as well as supermarket Waitrose, is expected to post an 8% increase in turnover to £4.2bn for the six months to the end of July, according to the Mail on Sunday.

Meanwhile The Sunday Times reports that John Lewis is likely to reveal a 6% boost in operating profits to £173m for its first half, while like-for-like sales at the department store chain are tipped to rise 4.5%.

If sales at the retailer continues to grow, it could overtake Marks & Spencer’s annual UK sales of around £9bn.

John Lewis has posted strong growth over the past few years. Last year profits soared, rising by more than 37%, while like-for-like sales shot up by 10.5% in the year to January 26.

Marks & Spencer however delivered just a 1.3% rise in group sales for the year to March 30 as like-for-like sales dipped 1%. Underlying pre-tax profits were down to £665.2m.

Robert Clark, senior partner at research firm Retail Knowledge Bank, told MoS: “John Lewis has been on a roll and, with new stores in the pipeline, it has got lots more to go. 

“The group is growing faster than Marks & Spencer and that is because it has been managed better tactically and strategically.”

Last week John Lewis posted a 1% drop in fashion figures for the week to August 31. However total sales for the week rose by 3.3% to £72.81m, making it the biggest sterling week of the half so far.

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